Where Was Darkest Hour Filmed?

Helmed by British filmmaker Joe Wright of ‘Atonement‘ fame, ‘Darkest Hour’ is a dark and brooding war drama that chronicles the early days of the Second World War. The dark omen of Nazi Germany hovers over Europe when Winston Churchill becomes the prime minister. He refuses to treaty with the Nazis and begins a steadfast war campaign. Gary Oldman earned himself an Academy Award for his methodical portrayal of Winston Churchill. Most of the movie unfolds in the administrative chambers, the House of Commons, and the high-octane war rooms. If you seek to identify where the movie was filmed, let us keep you posted.

Darkest Hour Filming Locations

‘Darkest Hour’ was filmed in its entirety in England, especially in and around London and Manchester. Principal photography commenced in November 2016 and wrapped up sometime after that. Bruno Delbonnel served as the cinematographer, whose previous credits include ‘Amelie’ and ‘Inside Llewyn Davis.’ Let us now take you to the specific locations where the movie was filmed!

London, England

The production team carried out a bulk of filming in the Big Smoke. Filming of a few exterior scenes took place in the Ministry of Defence (also known as the Whitehall Gardens Building), a Grade I listed government office located on Horseguards Avenue in the Whitehall area of London. Some external sequences were captured at 10 Downing Street, a government office and the seat of the UK Prime Minister, around 10 minutes’ walk from the Ministry of Defence. The war cabinet scenes were developed from scratch in the Ealing Studios, an old film and TV production facility situated at Ealing Green in West London.

The crew also visited Abington Street Gardens, a compact olden city square located at 5 Great College Street at a stone’s throw from the Westminster Abbey. The scene where Halifax and Chamberlain plot their resignations in a park was filmed here. In one memorable scene, Churchill surprises the residents by taking the metro and communicating with the commoners. The sequence was filmed at the now-defunct Aldwych Tube Station at 171 Strand.

The production team had to visit the landmark Palace of Westminster, the country’s central administration seat, informally known as the Houses of Parliament. They filmed scenes in St Stephen’s Hall, a chapel located within the UK Parliament showcasing Gothic Revival architecture. Moreover, the crew captured interior shots at the Houses of Parliament, especially the Westminster Hall.

The stairwell seen before the war rooms set was captured elsewhere, at Central Saint Martins College of Art, an art school located at Granary Building, 1 Granary Square, in the city. In a memorable scene, Churchill’s secretary Elizabeth Layton is on her way to work, but the city suddenly comes under attack from the enemy forces. The sequence was filmed at 33 King Charles Street, near Imperial War Museums. Filming also took place in the Greenwich borough of London on the River Thames.

Kent, England

Not staying confined in the London metropolis, the cast and crew ventured out to film scenes in the southeastern shire county of Kent. Chartwell House, a country house on Mapleton Road in the Westerham neighborhood of Kent, provided the backdrop for some scenes. Incidentally, the property was the home of the actual Winston Churchill for over forty years. Moreover, some scenes were filmed at Fort Amherst, a historical landmark fortification situated in the Medway region of Kent.

South Yorkshire, England

The production team filmed extensively in and around England to bring the historical biopic to life. Wentworth Woodhouse, a Grade I listed country house located in the Wentworth village in the Rotherham metropolitan borough of South Yorkshire, stood in for Buckingham Palace in the film. Moreover, the interior sequences of 10 Downing Street were filmed at Brodsworth Hall. The country house is located near Brodsworth, around 5 miles northwest of Doncaster, in South Yorkshire County.

Other Locations in England

A scene after the meeting of the French Ambassador takes place at the John Rylands Library of the University of Manchester, a renowned public research university in Manchester. In fact, several scenes were filmed here. The aircraft shots were captured at Bicester Aerodrome, in the village of London in the eastern outskirts of the town of Bicester in Oxfordshire.

Moreover, the team captured some sequences at the Manchester Town Hall, a Victorian and Neo-gothic administrative establishment located at Albert Square in Manchester. Lastly, although scenes were shot at the Palace of Westminster, the House of Commons was built from scratch at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden, an 80-hectare studio complex situated at Warner Drive in the Hertfordshire suburbs of Southern England.

Read More: Is Darkest Hour Based on A True Story?